Unfamiliarity in the Creation Process
When learning a craft, we are often presented with definite details on how we are to perform and apply certain techniques, and how said techniques may possibly be applied. We are guide-lined into understanding how to perform the basic, intermediate and masterful actions that will lead to our ability to create at the highest level. After we’ve learned the proper technique, it is often said that we should understand the craft enough now to stray away from the guidelines we’ve been taught to follow.
I’ve found personally that this “breaking of rules” often makes its appearance as either a stroke of genius or an accidental phenomenon. Most times, when occurring this way, I’ll find myself excited and rejuvenated by newfound possibilities. Slight deviations I had taken away from the guidelines had given me a touch of something fresh, and that smallest touch of originality and untread ground can turn good art into great art. In this situation, however, I’ve been treading primarily in the familiarity of the guidelines. What self-doubt is brought forth by the new unfounded aspect of my creation, is quickly quelled by how confident I am in the guidelines, as well as how accepted and respected said guidelines are widespread.
Then there are times when I find myself treading primarily in the unfamiliar. I’ve found myself in a creative process that deviates heavily from the guidelines I’m used to following, with no path to follow that will lead me to my finished creation. Every step I take closer to my end, is a blind one. I’m met with doubt and fear, as I have no real reassurance that my creation will live to be well-regarded or accepted by others. Though, retrospectively, my greatest art has been created in this space. Over the next months I’d like to explore further how I can allow myself into this space more often, whether limiting my use of tools or creating with an entirely different process than I have before. I think this is the key to creating great art and pushing the boundaries of not only your own creativity but also of others.
An Allegory of Fame and an Allegory of Virtue (detail), 1657, by Sirani Elisabetta (Italian, 1638-1665)
if not for the drops of sunlight
beaming through my window
then, who am i ?